|Dates: February 28th & March 1st
Event: FVP Outlaw Showdown
Series: World of Outlaws Craftsman Sprint Car Series
Track: The Dirt Track at Las Vegas (Las Vegas, Nev.)
Donny Schatz A-Main Finish (Start):
February 28th: 2nd (10th)
March 1st: 1st (5th)
World of Outlaws Championship Standings (as of 3/1): 1st – 738 points (12-point margin over second place, Sheldon Haudenschild)
BROWNSBURG, Ind. (March 5, 2018) – Officially winning three out of the first five World of Outlaws Craftsman Sprint Car Series events contested in 2018, Fargo, North Dakota’s Donny Schatz helped launch his West Coast Swing with the Greatest Show On Dirt with a trip to victory lane, this time claiming night two of the FVP Outlaw Showdown at The Dirt Track at Las Vegas in Las Vegas, Nev., on Thursday, March 1.
Schatz, aboard the Tony Stewart/Curb-Agajanian Racing/Textron Off Road/Ford Performance/Curb Records/Sage Fruit/No. 15 winged sprint car, earned two podium performances during his visit to Sin City with the World of Outlaws, kicking-off the two-day FVP Outlaw Showdown at The Dirt Track at Las Vegas with a runner-up performance on Wednesday, February 28.
“This just goes to show what this team is capable of doing,” Donny Schatz explained. “Sheldon [Haudenschild] is a tough competitor and he is going to be a tough competitor all season. Our goal is to be in a position to win every time we are on the race track. We came up one spot short on Wednesday, so our goal was to get that extra position on Thursday and leave Las Vegas on top. The West Coast Swing is an important stretch of our schedule. This is a good way to start things off.”
Schatz set-up his runner-up performance on Wednesday night by scoring the seventh fastest time of the night during his respective group qualifying effort. Although, a third place finish during the third of four heat races forced the defending World of Outlaws Craftsman Sprint Car Series champion to start the 30-lap A-main from the outside of row five.
Not deterred by his starting position, Schatz quickly advanced through the field. By the mid-point of the 30-lapper, the Fargo native was already battling for a podium position, officially taking over the third spot on lap 15 and the runner-up position one circuit later. As the laps counted down, Schatz was able to continue his progress and apply pressure on race leader, Sheldon Haudenschild. A series of cautions late in the race gave Schatz multiple opportunities to capitalize. Unfortunately, his time soon ran out, crossing under the final checkers second in the running order.
Schatz’s results on Thursday in Sin City improved across the board, this time qualifying fourth during his respective time trial group, ultimately setting up a runner-up finish during the second of four heat races. By earning a runner-up finish during his respective heat race, Schatz qualified for the Craftsman Club Dash and finished fifth. The evening’s dash result set the lineup for the first four rows of the 30-lap A-main.
Continuing a trend that ignited one night prior, Schatz wasted little time racing to the front of the feature field on Thursday, resetting the stage for an epic battle with Wednesday night winner, Sheldon Haudenschild.
Schatz’s lone hiccup of the 30-lap program occurred just after a caution. On the ensuing restart, Schatz fumbled and faded back to fifth, allowing Brian Brown and David Gravel to slip by. It would not take long before the nine-time World of Outlaws champion made his presence known back at the front of the field. With eight laps remaining, Schatz regained second, resetting his aim for the 2017 World of Outlaws Craftsman Sprint Car Series Rookie of the Year, Sheldon Haudenschild.
In an attempt to block Schatz who had been utilizing the bottom of the speedway, Haudenschild raced to the bottom of turns three and four on lap 26. The move proved to not be enough. Schatz squeezed under Haudenschild to officially lead lap 26, keeping control for the next four circuits to claim his third $10,000 top prize of the season.
With the World of Outlaws event scheduled for Saturday, March 3, at Perris (Calif.) Auto Speedway cancelled due to Mother Nature, Donny Schatz will continue his World of Outlaws Craftsman Sprint Car Series campaign on Friday and Saturday, March 9-10, with a two-day visit to the Thunderbowl Raceway in Tulare, California. Schatz will enter the weekend on top of the World of Outlaws championship standings, holding a 12-point cushion over recent rival, Sheldon Haudenschild.
The pilot of the familiar Tony Stewart/Curb-Agajanian Racing entry scored one Thunderbowl Raceway victory during World of Outlaws Craftsman Sprint Car Series competition in 2017, earning $10,000 on Saturday, March 18, over Daryn Pittman and Brad Sweet. It was Schatz’s sixth victory of the 2017 season.
Tony Stewart Racing: Facebook at www.facebook.com/TonyStewartRacing or on Twitter and Instagram @TonyStewart_Rcg.
Donny Schatz: Facebook at www.facebook.com/DonnySchatz or on Twitter and Instagram @DonnySchatz.
2018 Donny Schatz / Tony Stewart Racing Statistics: (thru 3/1/2018)
Total Races: 7
Total Wins: 5
Total Top-5s: 7
Total Top-10s: 7
World of Outlaws Races: 5
World of Outlaws Wins: 3
World of Outlaws Top-5s: 5
World of Outlaws Top-10s: 5